Green Christmas: 6 Tips for a More Sustainable Christmas at Home
This year is a wake-up call on how the things we do can impact the environment. From the gift wrappers we rip off to food we eat, celebrating Christmas can hurt Mama Earth.
Thus, now is an excellent time to celebrate a green Christmas. The best part is that we do not have to do anything grand to make it happen.
With a bit of creativity, you can reduce the environmental impact you make when celebrating Christmas. That said, we’ve listed six tips on how you can have a green Christmas.
Rent a Christmas Tree
Let’s start with the start of the show: Your Christmas tree.
There is a debate whether buying a real tree is more eco-friendly than purchasing a synthetic one. Sure, artificial trees can produce microplastics, which are the main culprit of land, sea, and air pollution. However, real trees are not often recycled after use.
Hence, we suggest renting a Christmas tree instead of buying a new one.
For one, it is more affordable. Second, there is a big chance that the tree will get replanted once the festivities are over.
Learn Furoshiki Wrapping
You may think that a gift wrapper is eco-friendly. After all, it is recyclable and compostable.
However, gift wraps made of glossy paper are non-compostable. Meanwhile, you cannot recycle or reuse metallic gift wraps or those with glitters or velvety flocking. Also, how many people do you know reuse, recycle, compost their gift wraps?
To compel your friends and family to reuse their gift wraps, we suggest that you use Furoshiki or Japanese fabric wrapping. When you do this, your gift recipients will be more inclined to find ways to reuse the fabric.
An excellent example would be to use the fabric as a scarf. Hence, consider using a fashionable fabric when wrapping your gifts.
Use Plantable Christmas Cards or Tags
Plantable cards are made of recycled paper with seedlings in them. Thus, the recipient can tear the cards and place them in a pot of soil. When well taken care of, you will see saplings in a couple of days.
Doing so can help you spread awareness about sustainability. You can also encourage your family and friends to grow their food, be it in a vegetable patch or a small planter on the kitchen countertop.
PRO TIP: Look for plantable cards with Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) marks. This guarantees that the cards were ethically sourced and made.
Reuse Whatever You Can
Here’s the thing: Celebrating a green Christmas does not mean you have to rent a Christmas tree, buy fabrics, or order a bundle of plantable cards.
Sustainability is all about spending less and making use of what you have. That way, you are encouraging a zero-waste loop. This explains why we encourage our clients at Cleaning Exec Cleaning Services NYC to make use of what they have.
If your artificial Christmas tree still looks decent, set up and decorate it by all means.
Do you have leftover gift wrappers from last year? Use it before opting for furoshiki.
Showcase your creativity or pen calligraphy skills by making your own gift tags.
Reusing whatever you have can help you save money. It also enables you to reduce the waste you are likely to incur from single-use plastics and packaging.
Get Smart With Your Energy Consumption
The holidays are the time when we consume the most energy. After all, we need to decorate our house with those blinking lights.
On the other hand, conserving energy does not mean that you have to forgo the fairy lights. What you can do is opt for sustainable lighting.
If it is time to replace your Christmas lights, we suggest looking for LED lights. They use 90% less energy to make your house look festive. You can also use smart sockets to time your lights. That way, they can automatically turn on at sundown and turn off before you go to bed.
Better yet, you can use a smart meter so you can monitor and control the energy consumption in your entire house. These include your appliances and other devices.
Reduce Your Food Waste
In the United Kingdom, people waste about 270,000 tons of food during Christmas. This is tantamount to 2 million turkeys, 5 million Christmas puddings, and 74 million mince pies disposed of while still edible.
That said, you can follow these quick tips so you won’t have to make too much food waste:
- Don’t cook it all. You likely bought a lot of ingredients for a holiday. But that does not mean you have to cook everything.
- Share food with your neighbors. It is an excellent way to spread kindness and reduce food waste. You can also choose to donate to food banks.
- Check your cupboards. A way to reduce food waste is to check whether you already have the ingredients you need. That way, you can cook what you already have and only buy what’s missing.
Having a sustainable Christmas does not mean that you have to be a party pooper. If anything, this is an excellent time to spread awareness about our environmental issues.
As such, we encourage you to follow the tips listed above. That way, you can celebrate the holidays without making too much impact on Mother Earth.